Smartphones are becoming even more powerful gaming machines as time goes on, with the latest devices capable of pushing some incredible graphics on a pocket-sized device. But what if you’ve got an old or budget device that doesn’t have the huge amounts of processing power or RAM? Well, Google’s hoping the answer is GameSnacks — the latest project from its Area 120 incubator — a series of lightweight HTML5-based browser games that are meant to be easy to load and play on nearly any device.
According to Google’s announcement, GameSnacks games are designed to load “within a few seconds” even in network conditions as poor as 1Mbps (typical 3G speeds), and play smoothly with as little as 1GB of RAM. Since the games are entirely HTML5-based, they’ll work equally well in a web browser, on a tablet, or on a smartphone.
The GameSnack games themselves are short, simple affairs, including a skiing game, a Spy Hunter-esque shoot ‘em up, and a jewel-themed matching game that definitely isn’t Bejeweled. Are they the greatest games in the world? Probably not, but they’re free, they’re fast to load, and they’re probably good for a quick diversion in a pinch. And some of them, like the minimalist Tower, are interesting diversions that could have a life as an actual downloadable game in another world.
Whether Google continues to expand GameSnacks is unclear, but the company’s announcement post does mention a partnership with Gojek (a southeast Asian technology platform) and its GoGames app. Google’s post also makes a point of mentioning that the games lend themselves naturally to being embedded into an existing app, for quick games — or playable advertisements — that could be customized for a particular brand.